Anxebla From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1701 times:
After to be the last 3 months working in Ireland, I've come back to Madrid.I know a few countries, in Europe and also in America.
When I came back home I always think We (Spaniards) have lucky for having a great quality of life.
To affirm this, I'm based on the following facts:
1.- We have a great weather (maybe many too hot in Summer time, especially in Cetral/South Spain between mid June to August)
2.-We have a great national (and healthy) food
3.-Our Fauna & Flora is unique in Europe and our environment is clean.Our 13 Nationals Parks and many Natural Parks are very "protégé" and kept (info in www.mma.es, there are info in Eng. and French as well)
4.-In addition to our Natural heritage, we have a Historical heritage very rich with a lot of castles, palaces and Medieval monasteries.
More than 40 million of tourist visit Spain every year.
Of course, this country is not the paradise.Our salaries are lower than in Central/North Europe and our personal income a 10/15% less.And also, unemployment rate is higher than desirable.
But anyway... I'm very proud be a citizen of the Kingdom of Spain and I think many a.net members can be agree with me if they have been in Sp.
Dmeeky243 From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 204 posts, RR: 0 Reply 1, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1689 times:
Absolutely, in fact, my good friend from grade school, all through college, and when we lived in Florence together, he fell in love with Spain. He just landed in Madrid yesterday and he'll be an English teacher there. He's very happy to be back there. His dad asked if he'd booked his return ticket when he told everyone about his plans...."What return ticket?" came the reply. Classic!
"I have a favorite dish, which tends to change daily depending on my mood, or whether I have a hangover, or whether it's
Anxebla From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 2, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1684 times:
Dmeeky... It's a good idea to go to Spain for be an Eng Teacher,in addition you can learn Spanish.When you come here to visit your friend, contact me and I'll tell you the best places to go according your wishes.
Dmeeky243 From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 204 posts, RR: 0 Reply 3, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1681 times:
Thanks much! I'm thinking springtime...work might slow down to where I can get away again. That's his plan, improve his Spanish while teaching English...now I just need two weeks off and an IB schedule! Haven't flown on them yet...thanks again! But yes, more replies on Spain please!
"I have a favorite dish, which tends to change daily depending on my mood, or whether I have a hangover, or whether it's
Rojo From Spain, joined Sep 2000, 2395 posts, RR: 10 Reply 4, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 1669 times:
My only concern is how centralized Spain is... I will love to live and work in Asturias, quality of life there is quite good and I can be close to family and friends. The only problem is that there are no jobs and career plan for me in Asturias. Besides some jobs in the government, in the "Cajas de Ahorro" and in "Dupont" (only multinational company), there is no true career plan. Madrid's only problem is that it is so hot during the summer... besides that, you can find a decent job there, but you will be making a lot more in London with a good quality of life. Prices in Madrid have skyrocket compared to prices in the "commendation" or "provincial" and salaries are still low...
IBERIA747 From Spain, joined Aug 2003, 1825 posts, RR: 62 Reply 5, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 1660 times:
I don´t think Spain is highly centralized...take a look at the financial/industrial/economic/cultural/commercial development of some regions such as Baleares, País Vasco, Rioja, Cataluña, Comunidad Valenciana compared to Madrid...about the same level, if not higher.
Obviously, Madrid concentrates more population than all those other places for being the capital but that has been like that for centuries. Nevertheless, don´t forget Barcelona which has a population almost as large as Madrid's in the entire metropolitan area and is the place where many international companies have settled their headquarters in Spain.
Schoenorama From Spain, joined Apr 2001, 2440 posts, RR: 28 Reply 6, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 1650 times:
I believe Spain is still very centralized. As a foreigner, I've lived in Madrid for 16 years and I now live in the Comunidad Valenciana. Although the latter can do much decision-taking on regional subjects, other important items still depend largely on 'Madrid'.
I do agree with Anxebla of the Quality of Life in Spain. On top of that, and the main reason why I am living here, is the social aspect. Although differences between regions exist, Spanish people in general are very open and very easy to get along with.
Another thing I particularly like is the 'day-by-day' form of living. Doing some planning in live is OK, but improvising is much more fun!
Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
Thowman From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2004, 359 posts, RR: 3 Reply 11, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 1551 times:
Ironic mode on
Mis amigos espanñoles! Where do I start?
The food? Spanish food is nothing special. The most usual form of cooking is to fry in olive and then cover everything in further large amounts of olive oil, salt and vinegar - how healthy is that? You should see how much salt my girlfriend covers everything with, especially salads. 99% of ovens are never used and used for storing pots and pans - most things cooked are fried. Vegetables are boiled to death and when you actually get the food, it is usually cold - especially chips/fries etc uggghhhh! If you go into most bars you will see exactly the same things for sale, usually with a few "local" variations depending on the region that the bar owner comes from. All fresh food in the supermarkets is appalling quality, but this is because the best gets exported. A lot of the seafood comes from tins (anchoas, mejillones, boquerones etc) and the rest is just the usual ham, cheese, potatoes etc with the same old sauces ali-oli, bravas, olive oil. The tapas (at least in Madrid) aren't that great - at least in Avila you get asked what you'd like.. If you ever visit anywhere in Spain you have to try the local "typical" food - which of course is the best in Spain - such as the roast baby pig in Segovia (or in Avila), Cocido in Madrid, In fact, everywhere in Spain there is the best in Spain. Spaghetti is cooked only with processed Tomato Frito and so on. In Spain you have to eat bread with everything and have many paper napkins at hand so that the mouth can be continually wiped. If you ever want to make a Spanish person feel uncomfortable, invite them to dinner and have neither bread nor napkins on the table and watch them squirm.....
Then there is the fish that has been plundered from all four corners of the world’s oceans. One day there will be nothing left swimming in the sea if the Spanish have their way. Everything gets covered with Tuna and if you are a non-seafood eater or vegetarian then you're buggered. Fish and seafood is the basis of the cuisine and it is consumed in huge quantities – and the fishermen will do anything to get it – whether it is legal or not. My parent's fish hide at the bottom of the fish tank for fear of being eaten when I visit the UK with my Spanish girlfriend. In Spain, if it moves, they shoot it and eat it. The wildlife has and continues to be decimated. My in-laws place looks like morgue with the amount of stuffed animal heads on the wall. When as Spaniard sees an animal, the first thing they think of is how nice it would be with a bit of garlic and fried in olive oil. When my girlfriend’s grandmother heard that she had bought a rabbit (and I mean a real “conejo” – not the other thing!), the first thing she did was tell us it how it would taste lovely with a bit of rosemary and some potatoes!
Customer service doesn't exist in Spain - we all know about Iberia (although they are getting better). If you are in a bar you have to shout and wave a lot to get served, don't expect to be served in a busy bar if you stand and wait your turn. Likewise, I don’t think the word “excuse me” exists in Spanish. People push you out of the way in the supermarket without a word - as well as bashing their trolley into you without a murmur of an apology.
Red tape is rife and state employees (funcionarios) don’t care about anyone or anything. They are slow, incompetent and have no authority to make decisions with out referring upwards. All they want to do is their secure job for life and go home and get paid.
Then there is queuing. In Spain this is something else. Generally a queue is something to be abused - and when I first lived in Spain, I used to get so frustrated by the people who come and ask who the last in the queue is, then stake their claim and bugger off to carry on with the shopping and then come back and expect to jump straight in in front of you - or you have the "placeholder" who stand in a queue while the rest of the family or friends do something else and return en-mass when their turn comes. Recently witnessed while waiting for the Tourist Train in Avila. You might think you are close to the front of the queue - but it is not always the case.
Then there is the rubbish that is called a Television service. Unless you are interested in what the "famosos" are doing and don't mind at least 20 minutes of adverts an hour for those magazine collections where you start of with the rivet and end up with a full size jumbo-jet - then Spanish TV is not for you. In fact, I have been driven to the point of suicide several times when watching TV in Spain. Oh, and no show is a show without dancing girls and an audience of Marujas. Also, how do they manage to make a game show go on for 3 to 4 hours?
On the road, the Spaniards are a law unto themselves. The driving is appalling and the consequent death toll is amazing. Ever tried to use a Spanish pedestrian crossing? You are dicing with death. Even the ones with traffic lights are risky and I have seen 2 people killed crossing when the man is green - right in front of my eyes!! When you are driving, people appear from nowhere walking across the road, not even looking to see what is coming. Drinking and driving is still common and still isn't considered by the average person to be a bad thing. It is an insult to someone's driving if you wear a seatbelt or decline a lift due to the fact they have drunk six large whisky and cokes and still see no wrong in driving. I sometimes wonder why are there are not more accidents when I see the standard of driving at 3am on the Castellana in Madrid. On motorways, people drive behind you at 140 km/h at a distance of less than a meter.
Smoking in institutional and a no smoking sign might as well not be there. Spanish people smoke everywhere. I’d love to see what happened if the government tried to ban smoking in enclosed public places like they have done in New York and Ireland. If you go out for a night out expect to come home well "smoked". Sometimes it seems everyone smokes.
Then there is Gibraltar. Spain complains about Gibraltar being British somehow seem to forget that they have got two equivalent places in Morocco – Ceuta and Melilla. Talk about double standard or hypocrisy. Of course, the average Spaniard will tell you this is not the same – but it is.
Oh yes, don’t ever criticise Spain to a Spaniard. You are dancing on the grave of their grandmother. Spain is the best so you’d better just accept it! So, any Spaniard reading this is going to be highly offended, even though I am entitled to have my opinion having lived in Spain on and off for the last 14 years – and I am talking about in the real Spain and not in the ex-pat community on the coast.
Ironic mode off-
Why do I live there then? Well – I just wrote it above. Spain is an addiction; it is a love-hate relationship. It’s the girl that treats you bad you just can’t give up. The reasons I hate things are the reasons I love it. The way of life is the reason I live in Spain and cannot escape. Nothing is ever certain, the pride, the nightlife (especially in somewhere in Madrid or Barcelona). The cost of living is low compared to my home country, although Madrid is getting very pricy – especially the housing – and the women are the most attractive in the known world. In fact, I know so many people who suffer the same way I do. Help – I need a doctor.
Alfonso – donde te has metido, tio? No te he visto en MSN recientemente!
IBERIA747 From Spain, joined Aug 2003, 1825 posts, RR: 62 Reply 13, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 1522 times:
Unfortunately what Greg says is becoming reality...and it´s increasing everyday...mostly during the last 5 years or so.
There are some disapponting facts about this but I won´t talk about them in any thread.
Anyway...it shouldn´t scare american companies from coming to Spain as crime rates here are way below those in the US.
DETA737 From Portugal, joined Oct 2000, 596 posts, RR: 0 Reply 14, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 1507 times:
Here are my observations on Spain and the Spanish way of life. I've been visiting Portugal about once and sometimes twice a year since I was young (this summer was my 21st trip there), so and occasionally we'd venture into Spain as well, though I had never spent more than 3 days or 4 days in Spain at a time and I was usually with my parents. So when I went to Portugal this May with a friend, I decided to spend two weeks in Spain as well. While I was in the Algarve I went to Seville and Gibraltar, and then after being in Lisbon I flew to Madrid and from there Ibiza and then to Barcelona.
The things I liked were the art, architecture and culture. Spain has a great deal of historic architecture and buildings, which they have done a good job of keeping up, cities like Toledo or Segovia are a must see. I also enjoyed the nightlife, Spaniards know how to party and they stay up late, Madrid and Barcelona were lively at all hours (unlike Lisbon which was dead at night). The food is also great, I loved the tapas especially jamón serrano, queso manchego and chorizo. The shopping was also great, especially in Madrid and Barcelona.
Things I didn't like were the suburbs around big cities (very ugly and boring). However, my biggest gripe was the general rudeness. I had always travelled with my parents and this time I was alone with a friend who was Canadian. We had been in Portugal and people there seemed very eager to try to speak English to us, however in Spain the opposite was true. I speak fluent Castilian, and it's really interesting the things that people would say about thinking we were Americans with no knowledge of Spanish (I actually am one). Though my friend spoke none and he was yelled at in Castilian even in the airport in Madrid. The concept of customer service seems like a foreign concept, and I had bad experiences at hotels, airports and restaurants. People in shops would generally attend to your needs when they felt like it. People on the streets also tend to bump into you without even saying sorry.
So would I go back? Of course I would, I definitely understand what Thowman is saying when he compares Spain to a girlfriend who treats you badly, but she still captivates you. I really enjoyed being there, the people are beautiful and they know how to party and enjoy life. This was in contrast to Portugal which feels kind of provincial and low key in comparison, the people are extremely friendly but there's something about Spain that is different. I'd even consider living there, especially Madrid, which I liked better than Barcelona (though most people say the opposite).
Lan_Fanatic From Chile, joined Sep 2001, 1071 posts, RR: 7 Reply 15, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 1502 times:
I visited Spain back in 1997, and I really liked it. I felt like being in home, although I have a complaint.
I went with my family to "Port Aventura", a theme park located near Tarragona, and people, specially youngsters used to not respect the places in queues. Also they used to spit on wet people who were in the Splash ride. I've been in Walt Disney World (Florida) and Disneyland Paris and I've never experienced both of those acts. People at those parks was much more respectful for others.
Aside of that, I would like to go some day to Spain for studying and spending some great time in our "madre patria". Obviously I would prefer to live in Madrid, rather than Barcelona. I don't know why but all of my classmates and friends are in love with Barcelona, and I'm the only one who felt Madrid was way better.
Ryanb741 From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2002, 3219 posts, RR: 17 Reply 18, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 1484 times:
Spain is very diverse and I like Barcelona and Madrid, but I find the rest of it pretty undeveloped compared to the UK, France and Germany.
I never had an issue with the rudeness, the food is IMHO so-so (but then again I don't like seafood so I'm probably missing out on the more famous Spanish dishes). I can't stand the idea of a Siesta (what's wrong with just working you lazy sods).
Santiago de Compostela and La Coruna are great places with hardly any tourists (major plus point IMHO). Very pretty part of the world.
I used to think the brain is the most fascinating part of my body. But, hey, who is telling me that?
IBERIA747 From Spain, joined Aug 2003, 1825 posts, RR: 62 Reply 19, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 1475 times:
"but I find the rest of it pretty undeveloped compared to the UK, France and Germany."
What exactly do you call "the rest of it"?, because I wouldn´t say that Málaga and Costa del Sol, Zaragoza, Valencia, Alicante, Sevilla, Bilbao, San Sebastián, Oviedo, Murcia, Granada, Toledo and many other places would look "undeveloped" if compared to other European countries. Of course, you cannot compare Almendralejo in Badajoz to London...it would be the same as to compare a small English town with 10,000 inhabitants and Madrid.
Schoenorama From Spain, joined Apr 2001, 2440 posts, RR: 28 Reply 20, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 1473 times:
"Spain is very diverse and I like Barcelona and Madrid, but I find the rest of it pretty undeveloped compared to the UK, France and Germany."
Which is exactly why I like Spain. One can still go to places where one gets the feeling that time has stood still. Local traditions are still preserved unlike in other parts of overdeveloped Europe.
"I never had an issue with the rudeness, the food is IMHO so-so (but then again I don't like seafood so I'm probably missing out on the more famous Spanish dishes). "
That explains why in another thread you said German food was much better than Spanish food.
"I can't stand the idea of a Siesta (what's wrong with just working you lazy sods)."
The siesta has got nothing to do with being lazy or not. In fact, in many areas Spain's productivity is higher with the siesta than other countries without. The siesta is an important part of the "Work-to-Live" approach rather than the "Live-to-Work" approach.
And the real siesta part is generally not more than 30 to 45 minutes of napping. You should try it. It works great and gives you a real energy boost!
Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
Md11lover From Switzerland, joined Oct 2003, 444 posts, RR: 0 Reply 22, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1425 times:
Hey guys! Great to know that so many people love Spain. I have been to Spain a few times, most recently in 2002 with my girlfriend, where we spent an amazing week together in Barcelona. Next summer I will be moving to Spain, Madrid to be precise, and will begin a career in law at the Universidad Pontificia Comillas de Madrid. I am so excited about moving there, and cant wait to start a new life there.
For you Madrilenos, I am looking to buy an apartment close to the University within the next few months. I know the real estate prices are very high, but my family is willing to invest. What good areas are there close to Comillas? Any information would be helpful. Thank you,
W_a_s_p_i_e From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2002, 170 posts, RR: 0 Reply 23, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 1413 times:
I am 17 now, and lived in spain from when I was 4 to 15. I was always targeted by the Spanish because I am English (obviously not all the spanish, but it was a frequent occurance and I often had to run home in fear of being beaten by the groups of Spanish who would chase younger english kids away). The Spanish police Guardia Civil are one of the most corrupt corporations I know.
The weather isnt all that great, sure its better than England, but we lived near Valencia and it was often extremely cold over there, if not then too hot!
The schools were SHOCKING. Absolutely terrible. The standard of teaching over there (in terms of English speaking schools of course) is not even 1% of that over here. No joke. Went to many schools in search of one with a better than average 2 C's at GCSE standard. Had found it VERY difficult to find one.
Mainly though I think the racism is terrible. Ok the majority of the English that go over to Spain are the worst out of the English, but the racism my brother and I used to have to put up with was phenominal.
And people say ITS SO MUCH CHEAPER. That is not true. In many things it was cheaper, but in many far more expensive than in England. I am glad I moved back, and none of my family will go there for some time.
IBERIA747 From Spain, joined Aug 2003, 1825 posts, RR: 62 Reply 24, posted (8 years 8 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 1400 times:
Well...coming from a 17 year old frustrated kid that´s not an offense...that´s a joke!!
You must have done really stupid things for being chased away by other Spaniards...you know...it´s not a normal thing to see Spanish hooligans and nobody would attack you just for being English.
People in Spain can seem to be rude sometimes for those who are not used to our way of speaking, but we are peaceful people...unless we are attacked and have to defend ourselves.
About the weather...Valencia too cold?? hmmmmm try Avila, Soria, Burgos or Teruel during winter then...
It´s the first time (and I don´t think I will hear this again from an English person) that I see an English complaining about "cold weather in Valencia"...I would understand that if said by a Nigerian but...from an English???
25 Thowman: I am looking forward to this winter in Ávila! Mmmm -20.... Spain just takes a bit of getting used to. Once you do, and you can undertand the mentalit
26 AA623BDLSJU: I have only been to Spain once (Jan. 2002). I was in Madrid and visited Toledo for a day. I found it quite easy to get around Madrid and the people we
27 W_a_s_p_i_e: People did attack us just for being English. E.g. The last day in Spain just before we left to go back to England we were playing football in the Poli
28 Levent: I´ve lived in seven different countries until now and Spain is almost my favorite. The only place I like more is Thailand, but that´s not an easy pl
29 IBERIA747: Waspie... Judging a country just for your early teenager street fights is not fair. I´m sure that you would have been invloved in the same situations
30 Catatonic: I love Spain, it my second home, if ever I could live anywhere else it would be Australia, but Spain would come a close second!!
31 ARGinMIA: Spain is a wonderfull place.. you just need to get rid of the royal family.. its shamefull that there are still some kings and queens in the 21st cent
32 Schoenorama: W_a_s_p_i_e: "But without the English who make up the biggest number of tourists in Spain, Spain wouldnt be anywhere near as developed as it is. We br
33 Thowman: ARGinMIA I think Spain would be a very different country today if it were not for the present King of Spain. It is thanks to him, his strong will and
34 Md11lover: ARGinMIA, Please tell me why you think its ridiculous to have a kingdom in the 21st century? Md11lover
35 Anxebla: To Rojo (reply 4) London is a cosmopollitan city, but it is not very interesting at all.To live, for example, I can prefer Paris 1000 times over Londo
36 Pdpsol: Thowman, Argentina's military government left power 21 years ago. Argentina has been a vibrant democracy since then. In fact the Argentine miliatary d